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  • Energy Efficient Booklet » CSBE
    s Theses on Architecture link Exploring the Edge Material on Graywater Use Material on Green Resource Efficient Building AREE The Complete Experience Energy Efficient Housing Booklet Two Residential Demonstration Research Projects on Water and Energy Efficiency Moustadam The CSBE Zaha Foundation Cycling Project Urban Crossroads Using Public Transportation in Amman Publications Resources Material on Green Resource Efficient Building Energy Efficient Housing Booklet Energy Efficient Housing Booklet How Can a House Be Energy Efficient Prepared by Joud Khasawneh and Nur Alfayez 2009 The preparation of this booklet was made possible with the support of the EU funded MED ENEC Project Energy consumption in residential buildings in Jordan amounts to 22 of the total energy consumption in the country Thus applying energy efficient principles in these buildings is of major importance However the design of most residential buildings in Jordan does not take into account energy efficient principles such as proper orientation and layout and the need to maximize the benefits from natural elements such as sun and wind which can lead to much more effective heating and cooling This booklet has been developed especially for householders living either in individual houses or apartment blocks This booklet can also help those looking

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/material-on-green-and-resource-efficient-building/energy-efficient-housing-booklet/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Two Residential Demonstration Projects on Water and Energy Efficiency » CSBE
    region particularly in Tucson Arizona and in Amman He mentioned that both have similar levels of precipitation which amount to approximately 300 mm per year He added however that the rainfall pattern in Tucson is bimodal but is unimodal in Amman 2 Tucson has a rainy season during the summer and another one during the winter The situation is different in Amman where rain falls in one season from November through March Brittain added that the total water demand exceeds the total available renewable supply in Tucson This is the result of a number of factors including low levels of precipitation rapid population growth and the high levels of water consumption by the mining industries and agricultural activities in the area Therefore the issue of water conservation in the different sectors of water use in Tucson is of great significance Brittain believes that implementing an efficient use of the limited water resources on a residential scale can play a significant role in reducing the amount of municipal water used in Tucson In order to motivate people to save water residential education and demonstration projects are required By a residential demonstration project Brittain refers to a house that would demonstrate to the public and educate it about water conservation Such a house would be one in which a family would live while researchers would monitor the house and record data about how much water is being used and what possible savings in water use might be achieved Through such a research project researchers would be able experiment with the use of water saving mechanisms such as using graywater and rainwater for irrigation The project also would allow the general public as well as water conservation specialists and other concerned parties to visit it tour its facilities and examine the ways in

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-landscape-design/material-on-water-conserving-landscapes/two-residential-demonstration-projects-on-water-and-energy-efficiency/ (2016-02-13)
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  • An Illusive Spark of Energy: Natural Gas Fracking » CSBE
    are rich in this resource and are building pipelines and LNG Liquid Natural Gas ports to facilitate its export The United States even exempted natural gas companies from complying with the Clean Water Act Congress approved this exemption in 1990 in order to find short term solutions that would boost employment levels and to free the United States from importing oil from unfriendly countries The idea that natural gas will be a great substitute for oil however is weakened by arguments addressing the environment abundance and prices Environmental scientists concur that natural gas produces less greenhouse gases than any other fossil fuels but are very concerned about the environmental and health safety of the extraction process They are specifically referring to hydraulic fracking which is commonly known as fracking Fracking involves drilling as deep as 8000 feet within the earth thus reaching the shale layer where natural gas also known as shale gas is found Advanced technologies allow this to be followed by horizontal drilling through the shale layer after which water mixed with chemicals is pumped into drilled pipelines using high pressure to fracture the shale layer and create cracks The pumped water and chemicals are then extracted from the pipeline and shale gas leaks through the fractured cracks all the way up to the earth s surface Shale gas is a combination of hydrocarbons mostly methane It is technically a fossil fuel and therefore a non renewable source of energy Modern technologies have made the process of extracting gas easy and often more affordable than extracting oil Huge amounts of water one to eight million gallons per well are required for a single fracking process and each well can be fractured up to eighteen times Dangerous chemicals such as lead uranium mercury hydrochloric acids and formaldehyde are also used with water to facilitate fracking Only 35 of fracking fluids are retained from the well the rest stays underground or leaks into groundwater reservoirs The extracted polluted fluid is kept in special open pits above ground and is impossible to filter because of the numerous materials of which it consists as a result of the chemical reactions that take place underground In addition the fracking sites may leak considerable amounts of methane gas which is a much stronger greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide Fracking also produces other chemicals including kerosene benzene and synthetic organic compounds The environmental and health effects of fracking are extremely dangerous and could cost much more than what is being saved by switching from other fossil fuels There are numerous recent documentaries that show the dangerous consequences of fracking One of them is Gasland This movie explains the different health and legal issues related to fracking Also residents living close to fracking sites have been reported to suffer from ailments such as nose bleeding as well as eye and skin irritation In addition very serious concerns relate to the contamination of drinking water with gases and chemicals which among other things make it flammable or

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/moustadam/an-illusive-spark-of-energy-natural-gas-fracking-also-available-in-arabic/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Political Planning for Change » CSBE
    change can happen through raising awareness which can be facilitated through encouraging strong and cooperative bottom up grassroots organizations PCAP includes three major themes bringing down carbon pollution preparing for the impacts of climate change and putting in place international efforts that aim at controlling the impacts of climate change Each theme includes several actions that are evaluated using an opportunity prioritization matrix Figure 1 The matrix is a tool for evaluating the degree of achievability of each action according to the value of its impact verses the ease of its implementation It divides actions into four categories quick wins which are easy to implement with a high impact Low hanging fruits which are easy to implement but have a low impact must haves which are hard to implement but have a high impact and money pits which are hard to implement and have a small and sometimes a negative impact Positive actions featured in PCAP Creating standards for carbon pollution from new and existing power plants is a positive step Moreover updating the Clean Air Act to include a controlling mechanism for carbon emissions is a must The Clean Air Act has not been updated since 1990 quick win Doubling the production of renewable energy is an easily achievable action but will have a low impact on total GHG reductions since non renewable sources still represent the vast majority of the energy supply Renewable energy only amounted to 9 3 of total energy consumption in the United States in 2012 low hanging fruit Increasing the amount of investment in clean energy innovation will open the road for new technologies to replace heavy GHG emitting energy sources must have Fuel economy standards will have a huge effect on reducing GHG emissions resulting from transportation quick win Applying advanced transportation technologies as with increasing the use of bio fuels and electric cars will also have a huge impact in terms of reducing GHG emissions quick win Increasing energy efficiency in residential and commercial buildings can result in a significant decrease of about 11 in emissions from homes and commercial buildings quick win An active collaboration between state governments and the federal government will increase the effectiveness of efforts aimed at GHG emissions reduction and may exceed suggested targets must have The United States has a global obligation to lower its GHG emissions It must attain this objective as quickly as possible must have PCAP includes natural gas coal and nuclear as part of its clean energy investment strategy It suggests natural gas as a bridge fuel from coal energy and suggests the utilization of clean coal technologies to minimize the huge amount of CO 2 that coal emits It also promotes a safe and secure utilization of nuclear technology not only in the United States but throughout the world Referring and promoting natural gas coal and nuclear as clean energy may contradict and weaken this plan for the following reasons Natural gas is not a clean energy source When burnt it

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/moustadam/political-planning-for-change-also-available-in-arabic/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Planning for change » CSBE
    an idea which in turn leads to action Communities all over the world whether small or large are struggling with various ongoing economic and environmental challenges Malnutrition rising debt rates climate change and the high dependency on fossil fuels are just a few of them Sustainability practices offer solutions that allow communities to adapt to challenges and to recover from setbacks Communities that are able to do so are ones that show high levels of resiliency It all begins with an idea that influences the community to change towards sustainability The question however is how can a single idea reach the public and affect it I have come across two approaches One is a direct approach that depends on building a conversation between community members about sustainability The other is an indirect approach that depends on behavioral science In the city of Totnes in the United Kingdom environmental activist and author Rob Hopkins has worked on infusing communities with sustainability ideas through lectures and conversations with concerned citizens He then started implementing small projects with community members that have included creating community vegetable gardens introducing the Totnes Pound which serves as a voucher supporting local products and advocating alternative transit modes This grew to become a worldwide movement that continues to motivate communities to change their daily practices and become more sustainable and adaptable to environmental and economic crises Transition Town Totnes TTT was established in 2006 but since then has built a network of 1800 initiatives and has engaged thousands of community champions in 43 countries around the world through The Transition Network a charitable organization that emerged out of TTT The Transition Network has been working to inspire encourage connect support and train communities as they self organize around the Transition model which involves creating initiatives that build resilience and reduce CO2 emissions Today The Transition Network provides guidelines and examples of how proactive communities can initiate sustainable projects dealing with food education transportation building local governance and energy The concept of Transition that has emerged out of the Transition Network is ongoing and is achieving its goals It is putting intelligent and practical solutions out into the community to make change a possibility through conversations as well as different and diverse community initiatives that are documented on its website Its activities have proved to be highly inspiring and motivating for other communities leading to building capacities and expanding awareness and knowledge Here in Vancouver Transition Network inspired a group of people to create Village Vancouver which has several initiatives and sustainable projects all across the city like beekeeping establishing a local currency developing local farming and implementing alternative transit modes All this is carried out through continuous events and workshops that keep awareness and the sustainability conversation going The second approach to influencing people into adopting sustainability practices is based on peer neighbour pressure In his Ted talk energy expert Alex Laskey explains how home owners become more motivated to save energy when told how much energy

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/moustadam/planning-for-change-also-available-in-arabic/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Stereotyping Sustainability » CSBE
    set through six different impressions about sustainability and sustainability advocates The attached figure is what I came up with 1 What society thinks sustainability is Society often stereotypes sustainability advocates as green hippies trying to save the planet Sustainability advocates may share similarities with green hippies but the two groups are different Sustainability advocates have nothing against wearing suits and they often are hard to distinguish from the people around you They belong to all walks of life Sustainability is also mixed up with the concept of green Whereas green is about the environment sustainability is about the environment society and economy This may be the most widespread misunderstanding about sustainability 2 What governments think sustainability is Governments often view sustainability either is a radical proposition to be shunned or as an opportunity to raise more revenue through mechanisms such as carbon taxes or penalties on pollution In both stereotypes sustainability is misunderstood and an opportunity for implementing solutions for many social and economic challenges is missed 3 What corporations think sustainability is For a number of corporations sustainability is an image to be projected to the public that can help improve their reputation and present them as do gooders even though they may continue to engage in unsustainable practices This is unfortunate since while adopting truly sustainable practices will improve a corporation s public image it also provides for sound long term administrative and economic practices 4 What sustainability advocates think they do Some sustainability advocates think they are heroically and selflessly saving the world Most however simply believe that they are promoting easily adaptable principles and lifestyles that can create healthier communities 5 What sustainability advocates really do For those from the outside sustainability advocates may seem as if they engage in more talk than action However they

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/moustadam/stereotyping-sustainability-also-available-in-arabic/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Beyond Green Buildings » CSBE
    and Cradle to Cradle Buildings are even evolving beyond minimizing their impact on the environment to contributing to the restoration of natural environments It is within this context that the concept of regenerative design has emerged mostly in North America The Living Building Challenge certification program for example provides a range of examples and experts on regenerative design that integrates the needs of society with natural systems Architects and designers accordingly address buildings as part of a whole natural system and try to restore natural sub systems linked to the building such as existing streams and plants Moreover as buildings adopt renewable energy systems or produce more food than their inhabitants need they can become a source of income through exchanging the excess energy water or food they produce with members of their communities This transforms buildings from resource absorbers to resource producers and to positive contributors to the natural environment The regenerative design process however remains in its earliest stages USGBC is raising its LEED certification standards to incorporate regenerative design but it is still an emerging approach and its examples remain very few In spite of nascent attempts such that of the Living Building Challenge existing building certification systems still emphasize lowering carbon emissions from buildings and connect sustainability to neutral emission buildings Sustainability however is much more than developing a zero carbon building Analyzing buildings according to a triple bottom line analysis that consists of the environment economy and society shows how the term sustainable is barely met in green buildings and provides a much more comprehensive understanding of the concept of sustainability Environment The effect of buildings on the environment is huge According to USGBC buildings contribute around 38 20 residential and 18 commercial of carbon emissions to the atmosphere Also the construction and operation of buildings take up about 50 of our consumption of natural resources and buildings generate 25 of landfill waste Building materials are extracted from the environment at a large scale and in some cases without any impact assessment In Jordan almost all buildings are built using the same construction model which primarily incorporates cement and steel reinforcing as well as stone cladding The stone is extracted from quarries without carrying out any environmental impact assessments for the mined sites We also should not forget that the production of cement contributes 5 of worldwide carbon dioxide emissions and that the production of steel requires a lot of energy Green certification programs have well covered the environmental impact of buildings through addressing the design construction and operational processes and have encouraged considerable transformations in building construction methods However we should always keep in mind that buildings have a huge impact on the environment and use up a lot of resources Economy Introducing concrete and steel in building construction initially had a dramatic impact in terms of lowering construction costs and allowing developers to build more at a much lower price Among other things this made home ownership more affordable This situation however has

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/moustadam/beyond-green-buildings-also-available-in-arabic/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Who Owns the Clouds? » CSBE
    access to clean water There are two points of view when looking at securing this precious resource One relates to local and global policies and the other to technology During the 1980s water began to be defined as a commodity and water authorities began to be privatized at a wide scale Water prices skyrocketed as a result and in some cases became unaffordable Serious issues are arising from this control of private companies over the public s water sources These companies are after profit and governments often have failed to put in place the necessary regulations that protect the public s right to water Surprisingly the United Nations did not include water as a global issue in its Millennium Development Goals established in 2000 The World Health Organization however has made considerable efforts over the last twenty years to provide about two billion people with access to clean water sources and in 2010 the UN recognized the human right to water and sanitation in Resolution 64 292 which stipulates that clean water should be accessible and affordable Not only is the accessibility to affordable clean water a basic human need but its inaccessibility and scarcity may very well lead to water wars between countries When I moved to Vancouver in Canada I initially bought water bottles for drinking water I continued to do what I used to do in Jordan where many feel that the water coming from the water authority is not suitable for drinking without boiling or filtering I eventually found out that tap water in Vancouver is suitable for drinking without any treatment I also found out that it is free There is no metering system for water consumption even though the average per capita consumption of water there is around 519 liters day I found this a luxury particularly when considering how Jordanians whose average per capita consumption varies from 7 to 145 liters day measure their water usage by the drop and how the water supply may be disrupted for extended periods in the summer Water scarcity is a concern in most arid climates Water often is collected in dams or retrieved from ground water sources Serious measures for water conservation are put in place and rainwater harvesting and storage are a way of life Dams however disturb existing ecosystems and choke the running of rivers Over the long term water stored in dams may become contaminated by mercury As for ground water it is an unpredictable resource in that its quantities cannot be determined with certainty Moreover the depletion of ground water resources will raise salinity levels in the soil above it rendering it barren Seawater desalination is another source for drinking water There are nearly 12 500 desalination plants around the world that produce fourteen million m3 day of fresh water or about 1 of world consumption These desalination plants primarily are located in the Middle East and North Africa region MENA in the states of California and Florida in the United States

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/moustadam/who-owns-the-clouds-also-available-in-arabic/ (2016-02-13)
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